I received a sample in the 2012 August Birchbox. For my sensitive skin, this is a resounding "NO". For other skin types, it could be a possilibity. If you have sensitive skin issues, beware that it is drying and a bit harsh. Until I looked at the ingredients, I had no idea about glycolic and salicyclic acids. If I had looked, I never would have used it. It's drying, stung my skin and smells horrible. I can usually handle smells but this is very medicinal. If you have oily,non-sensitive skin, this might OK for you. Just watch out for any excessive drying. A note to all: I expected this cleanser to be more concentrated. It took a quarter size amount to really clean my face.
I started using the hydrating cleanser in the fall of 2011 and I'm in love again. I have rosecea, under control with Finacea, that has occasional flare-ups and is sensitive to anything anti-aging, anti-wrinkle, or anti-anything. My last skin cleanser (Dove) has long been discontinued and I had been on the hunt for a gentle mascara-removing cleanser. After trying a sample size, I knew that I had hit the jackpot. The creamy lotion cleanser leaves my skin feeling clean, comfortable and clear of all regular makeup (non-waterproof mascara). It was a lifesaver during the winter when most of my flare-ups happen. My skin tends to be a little combo so I might try the foaming cleanser next summer. But, for now, I'm buying my second bottle!
Fragrances -Unlisted Brand - Juliette Has a Gun - Not A Perfume
Beaner 7/5/2012 10:49:00 AM
I'm not a fragrance person but I know what I like and what smells good on me. This ambers Not A Perfume just reminds of of a cheap hair spray. I spritzed on and would sniff every once in a while. Nothing changes and I couldn't detect anything good. Normally, I like amber...just not this one.
Styling Products -TiGi - Hard Head hard hold hairspray
Beaner 7/25/2011 3:24:00 PM
This is as close a product as I've come to the old Pantene Texturize hairspray. What a shame that it cost almost 3x times as much. That said, I will buy again. I like my hairspray do be HAIRSPRAY! This is a maximum hold that does leave your hair feeling a bit lacquered but that's what I like. And unlike some other hairsprays, it doesn't weigh your hair down giving you time to play and mold before it is dry. Nor is a too-slowing drying. And it leaves shine. I will use it again but will continue the search for a cheaper product.
Styling Products -Paul Mitchell - Extra-Body Finishing Spray
Beaner 7/25/2011 3:17:00 PM
I guess it depends on what you want from a hair spray; but, this isn't for me. There are a few good things: fine mist, doesn't weight hair down, dries quickly. However, I was looking for more staying power and a stronger hold. This is pretty expensive hairspray when Tresemme Two does just as good a job.
Here lately, it seems that the more I spend on a tube of CG mascara, the more digusted I get with each tube. Maybe it's because I'm a child of the 80's but I love the old bristle brushes and heavier mascara. I classify this mascara into the type that give soft lashes but there's nothing volumizing or lenghtening that other mascara don't already do. Yes, it gives nice non-spider, non-clumping lashes but that's the extent of it. I hate the brush which is pretty useless, IMO. The Lash Blast Fusiont pulls the curl out of lashes which irritates me greatly. And, this is the big one, I can get better results with the older CG mascara like Volume Exact and Eyelights. Now those are mascaras work buying. This one....never again.
I'm knocking off the star for "nourishing". I still have to reach for my beloved Chapstick. HOWEVER, I'm loving the Fig!! This pinky, bronzy color (think of a darker rose gold) looks fantastic on my average pigmented lips. It provides enough color that I can wear it with just about every outfit and every color. I'm finding myself reaching for Fig more than any other lippy in my stash. Plus it gives just enough shine that your lips don't look matte nor gloss-goopy. I would love to try the Alima colors, especially a red.
While I'm a big fan of MMU in sifters, I'm not nuts about blushes in the same packaging. Makes it hard to pick up a little and get an even layer on the cheeks. That being said, I love the color, Honey Rose. It's very similar to the online swatch but a smidgen lighter. On my cheeks (fair-medium, more medium in the summer, Beige 3-4), Honey Rose comes across as a nice flush similar to my natural color. Sometimes, pinks appear too pinks and muted shades look too brown. This honeyed part takes the "rose" down a notch to a very wearable color. It's been a awhile since I had a blush in this color range and I LIKE IT!
Primer/ Corrector -Alima - Balancing Primer Powder
Beaner 7/30/2010 10:07:00 AM
Currently, I'm using Everyday Minerals concealer for any redness caused by my rosacea. Since I was ordering sample of the Satin Matte foundation, I included samples of the Light and Medium Balancing Primer. I like the primer but I have a problem with the colors. Even the medium seems too light. I have a tan (don't flame me...it's the best thing for my rosacea and psoriasis) but it's not that dark. Other than that, the primer provides full coverage. I'm not overly oily but I do get shiny in the humid Indiana summers. It does keep the oilies at bay but sweat is a different story. Since EM isn't my favorite choice (see my reviews), this would be excellent replacement.
I.Am.In.Love!!! What a nice foundation! After the horrible quality of Everyday Minerals and pricey, shiny Bare Escentuals, I was leery to try a new mmu. I read the reviews of Alima and found that I could get samples (love saving money). What a nice foundations! Am I repeating myself? The satin matte finish is perfect. Matte without the lifelessness of EM and satin without the shininess of BE. Healthy...that's the word I'm looking for! I'm a big believer in mmu for my rosacea. I started using finishing powders when I turned 30 (I'm now 43) because I never liked the way liquids performed. Best thing I ever did! My breakouts and blackheads decreased dramatically. And Alima improves the look of my skin. Now, if you are looking for a medium/full coverage, you won't find it with this product alone. Try the Balancing Primer underneath for a fuller coverage. Skin irritations? Not any here but then again, EM and BE didn't bother me either. Now if your skin is oily and you are looking for a truly matte finish, this might not be the best bet for you. There is a satiny fnish but I decided that satin is better than matte for my aging skin. In case you can't tell, I'm off to buy me some new foundations!
Powder -Everyday Minerals - Foundation Matte Formula
Beaner 7/30/2010 9:16:00 AM
I had reviews for the semi-matte and matte but I deleted them because the quality has definitely gone down. I've been using EM for 4 years (or more) and this batch is not the same formula as my previous purchases. The formulas used to be silky and smooth. Now I get chalkiness in both the semi-matte and matte formulas. This will give you an idea. I was recently outside in in the morning when it was overly hot and extremely humid. When I got in the car and looked in the mirror, my powder had run and looked cakey. It had never done that with my previous purchases and I've lived in hot and humid summers all my life. I didn't have skin issues or sensitivies with the previous formulas and I still don't with these new ones (rosacea). I've recently tried some samples from Alima which are similar to the old EM. Sorry EM...Hello Alima!
Powder -Everyday Minerals - foundation semi-matte formula
Beaner 7/30/2010 9:13:00 AM
I had reviews for the semi-matte and matte but I deleted them because the quality has definitely gone down. I've been using EM for 4 years (or more) and this batch is not the same formula as my previous purchases. The formulas used to be silky and smooth. Now I get chalkiness in both the semi-matte and matte formulas. I never had any skin issues with the previous formulas and I still don't with these new ones (rosacea). I've recently tried some samples from Alima which are similar to the old EM. Sorry EM...Hello Alima!
My favorite blush, Jane Blushing Blossom, is getting harder to find. Some Walmarts seem to have taken Jane out of the stores. In search for something new, I picked up Rimmel blush in Pink Sorbet. I was less than impressed with my first day. I thought it was too light in pigmentation and I normally don't like shimmer in my blush. But I tried it again and I noticed something. The shimmery pink blush with a hint of peach made me look awake and healthy! Sometimes, Jane blushes are a little too pigmented and make me look "blushed". This one is perfect....I think I found my new favorite!!
In my review of the CG Eyelights mascara, I said that I would never buy it again. While after time, I have to change my mind. But, on this mascara, I don't think I will change my mind. Out of all the CG mascaras I've tried (and CG is my fav), this has to be the worst for the price. The formula is dry and my curled lashes seem not so curled. Yes, there's some length but I get the same length with Volume Exact or Eyelights. And volume...nada, nil, zippo, zilch. Looks like I'm not even wearing mascara. If a nice, soft, barely-there look is what you are after, there are much better and cheaper mascaras that will give you the same look. This is a way-over priced mascara that fails to deliver.
Moisturizers -Cerave - Facial Moisturizing Lotion - PM
Beaner 3/3/2010 11:33:00 AM
I'm in love!! I have the hardest time finding a good moisturizer (without sunscreen) for my rosacea. My 40-something skin still needs moisture in winter thought not so much in the summer. It's hard getting a moisturizer that won't upset my rosacea, cause my face to get redder, cause a rosacea break-out, give me the greasies/shinies and yet still do an optimum job of moisturizing. CeraVe PM does it all!!! I've been using it now for 2 weeks. No flare-ups, no break-outs and my face feels soft and calmed. PM reminds me of my beloved Dove Sensitive Skin Lotion which was discontinued. Yes, this is a more expensive than most drug store brands but I'm willing to pay the price for a product that makes my skin happy. I've never used the CeraVe cleanser and lotion so I can't compare the products. I only hope PM is able to go the distance before it's taken off the shelves. I have the worst luck with products getting discontinued.